England ensured they finished their World Cup qualification project unbeaten with victory in Lithuania – yet it was another poor efficiency only rescued by Harry Kane’s first-half goal.


Manager Gareth Southgate offered debuts to Tottenham’s Harry Winks and also Leicester City protector Harry Maguire as well as trying out a three-man main defence after their area in Russia was already confirmed by Thursday’s win against Slovenia at Wembley.

Winks impressed, almost scoring in the 2nd half, as well as there was a heavy Spurs influence in the game’s decisive moment after 27 minutes as Dele Alli was fouled, leaving Kane to score, as he has done in each of his four games as England captain.

If Lithuania had a prolific striker anywhere near Kane’s calibre they would certainly have significantly ashamed England as a number of clear possibilities were missed, while goalkeeper Jack Butland spared the blushes of his very own defender Michael Keane when he saved superbly from the defender’s miscued clearance after the break.

England’s win right here in Lithuania was built on the design template for their World cup qualification project – work done however little or no ideas and also absolutely nothing to strike fear into any kind of possible opposition in Russia next summertime.

There ought to have been an immediate side to this England display screen, with Globe Cup places for up grabs and also Southgate in the mood to explore all alternatives as he made 7 changes from the group that protected the area in Russia with victory versus Slovenia.

Instead, England coincided pedestrian group that contend times made such heavy weather of some extremely typical opposition in Group F.

Winks did impress, Marcus Rashford provided flashes of hope and Kane was on the mark – yet these were extremely little shafts of light in an additional poor efficiency.

Southgate and England can congratulate themselves on discussing this team with eight wins and also two draws from 10 video games.

However although the stats go over, the real performances were not. As well as they were results England must have obtained, offered the good hand they were sold the qualifying draw.

England could currently move forward to Russia – however few fans will certainly be getting their hopes up on this unattractive proof.

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